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Employee Stories Employee Stories

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Kai's Story

Kai worked as a project manager in e-mobility. "I chose this career path because I have always been interested in being able to realize my potential in a future-oriented business field."
He finds it exciting to work in an innovative field where he can grow with his tasks. "As a system developer for E-Mobility at ZF, I accompany the entire product process, from the requirements to the concept and its validation to production. ZF provides all the necessary resources for this." But it's not just hardware resources that are important to Kai in his work environment, but also human resources.
"What I value most in my work is the exchange with my international colleagues." Thanks to the comprehensive know-how of his team, Kai has the opportunity to always learn new things, acquire new knowledge and thus outgrow himself. "As an employer, ZF was my first choice because the company has a long-term business strategy and future orientation."
"I always wanted to develop drives for the future."
Kai Wang

Pascal's Story

Pascal applied and started his training at ZF shortly afterwards. "My training was very varied and I enjoyed it a lot. Also, the training opportunities here at ZF are very good."
How do you program correctly and clearly? Why does a plant control system not operate and what do you have to do to make it do so? Pascal learned how to handle such tasks during his training in Friedrichshafen, Germany. Setting up and putting into operation highly complex industrial plants as well as programming, testing and maintaining plants are among his many tasks. This often involves very complex work. "That's exciting and interesting, especially because sometimes you have to think for a while until you come up with a solution."
"Individual components become a complete system that operates automatically."
Pascal Bucher

Todd's Story

Todd came to know ZF at the career day of the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit, USA, and joined the company as an intern the same year.
In the ZF Car Powertrain Technology Division / Automatic Transmission Business Unit, he is now a test engineer and software tester responsible for the powertrain of electric and hybrid systems as well as transmission software and applications. He is concerned with how ZF's already 20 years of experience with electric drives can be used beneficially, for example, to design a hybrid drive to meet the specific requirements of the U.S. market. "I chose ZF because they gave me the opportunity to put my research to practical use in the high-growth electric driveline sector. And I travel to centers of excellence around the world to bring that knowledge to the U.S. and build better products at ZF."
"With combined expertise from around the world, we build better products in the U.S."
Todd Perkins

Charbel's Story

In the U.S., Charbel then served as Accounts Payable Manager in the Accounting Shared Service Center. "I was part of a great team there and learned a lot - about the location, the people, and about the country and its realities." After another stint in Controlling at ZF's Car Driveline Technology division, his path led him back to Friedrichshafen, Germany.
As Investor Relations Manager in the Finance and Controlling division at ZF, Charbel now deals, for example, with the question of how to best inform investors and analysts about ZF's economic and technological successes. And what is the relevant data to present at information events. "I really enjoy bringing all my experience about ZF and its products to bear when working with our investors." Charbel runs a specific type of corporate communications, not only acting as a direct contact for analysts, investors, and rating agencies, but also coordinating roadshows, conferences and investor meetings. He also prepares presentation materials and maintains the investor relations corporate website. Charbel thus shapes the image of ZF as a corporate borrower and also as a capital market-oriented company.
"The variety of topics and the internationality of the contacts - that's what excites me."
Charbel Chamoun

Chen's Story

Chen works for ZF in the Freight Purchasing Asia Pacific department in Shanghai, China. He supports and coordinates the daily logistics routes and tasks at the plants in the region. Chen pays special attention to optimizing reporting and information flow.
After studying "International Economics and Trade" at Shanghai University and "International Business" at the University of Technology in Sydney, Australia, his path led him directly to logistics at ZF. During a 15-month internship, Chen already gained deep insights into the ZF world, and after graduation, his first full-time position started here. "I've always worked in purchasing, it was a perfect fit for the direction of my studies," the sports fan recounts. Initially as a contact buyer exclusively for ZF China, he later moved to the Commodity Team, where he is responsible for the entire Asia-Pacific region. "It's important to me to constantly develop and never stop learning. That's why this job suits me so well: I'm constantly trying to do something better."
"Interaction with people is critical for me as a buyer."
Chen Jinkai

Esther's Story

Esther started her career at ZF in 2011 as a function developer in e-mobility. Over the past ten years, she has successfully advanced to team leader of a twelve-person project team in software coordination. "I really appreciate that everyone at ZF has the chance to grow into a high position." As a project manager, Esther has already had the opportunity to develop an innovative temperature model for a sensor and test the new functions thoroughly.
"In my job, no two days are the same. That's what I like about my work. Using ZF's vast experience with driveline components and systems in the transformation to electromobility is so exciting and challenging - and I like challenges. I'm really proud to be part of this transformation at ZF."
Esther has always been interested in technical details and chose her career at ZF to have access to benchmarking technologies. She is grateful that ZF trusts her skills and supports her with appropriate resources and an experienced project team.
What excites her most about her work is that e-mobility is forward-looking and the latest technologies are available to her at ZF.
"With ZF products into the future of mobility - that's what excites me about my job."
Esther Schuerr

Marcel's Story

Marcel is enthusiastic about his job and describes how projects and collaboration work: "It starts with a customer requirement. Then the concept is created - first the mechanics - a circuit diagram for the hardware, the board layout that fits exactly into the mechanics - that's how we drive the project forward. The programming of the software runs in parallel. At the end, the software is loaded, and everything is tested on the test bench." Marcel is fascinated when the individual elements are inserted into the vehicle as a complete system and then function smoothly as a unit. Marcel finds the solutions to the tasks he faces together with his colleagues as a team. "It's something new every day, and it's a lot of fun."
"ZF offers me the opportunity to take on a responsible job at a young age - and in electromobility, which is a technology of the future. That's why I'm proud to be part of the ZF team."
"Taking responsibility at a young age - that's my thing."
Marcel Hanisch

Sven's Story

How do you teach gigantic trucks to stay in lane and at a distance by themselves or to pull up to the loading ramp? Sven and his team are integrating Highway Driving Assist into the Innovation Truck. An electronic control unit processes the information provided by the camera and radar about the vehicle's surroundings and sends impulses for action to the steering and transmission. This enables the truck to maintain its lane and a fixed safe distance from the vehicle ahead. "Even though I'm relatively new to this, I was able to get involved as a technical project manager. It's a cool job, linking a wide variety of systems from ZF but also external systems."
Sven graduated from the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Germany, with a Master of Science degree in mechanical engineering, specializing in lightweight construction and automotive engineering. After a stopover as a research assistant at the Research Institute for Automotive Engineering and Vehicle Engines in Stuttgart, Germany, he started as a software developer in the Commercial Vehicle Hybrid Functions & Systems Integration department at ZF.
"Smart technology for commercial vehicles - how can you not be excited about that?"
Sven Gohl

Julie's Story

How can airbags installed in the headliner, so-called curtain airbags, be deployed faster, more fail-safe and with greater range? And how should the airbag casings be designed? These are the kinds of questions that challenge Product Engineer Julie every day, at her job at ZF in Michigan, USA. In the Occupant Protection Systems business unit, which produces passive safety features such as airbags and seat belts, she is responsible for the curtain airbags of various General Motors vehicle models.
While studying mechanical engineering at Oakland University, she worked for Chrysler during her studies. After graduation, she moved to the automotive supply industry and finally to ZF, three years ago. She has never regretted the move. "I originally chose ZF because of its proximity to my home. After three years working here, I can say with a clear conscience: I'm inspired by the technologies we develop and manufacture, and also by the great people I work with here." She particularly appreciates the diversity of the products and the practical benefits they show in everyday life
"We provide safety to people on the street."
Julie Schoenherr

Saniya's Story

How does a young Indian woman find her passion in processing digital signals and programming algorithms? "I became interested in computers and electronic devices in high school, when I was 14 years old. It took me weeks to convince my parents to buy me my own PC. And pretty quickly I wanted to be more than just a user, I wanted to know how things worked."
She has consistently followed her path: As one of 15 women among 70 students in her semester, she enrolled in electronics and communications engineering in 2004, specializing in digital signal processing and ECU software. For her master's degree three years later, she moved to Bangalore, India, 1,100 kilometers away.
The software specialist's determination impressed ZF manager Ricardo Gonzalez in 2016. He was keen to have her on his team in 2017 for the opening of the technology center in Hyderabad, India, and was able to persuade her to make another move to Hyderabad, 600 kilometers away. From there to Germany, it was another bigger move in the summer of 2018. "It quickly became apparent that it made sense to have a direct interface to the coders in Hyderabad here with the developers in Friedrichshafen," says Saniya Khan, explaining her current role.
She is enthusiastic about the passion and commitment of her colleagues in the search for the best solution. And by the practical relevance: "I used to sit at computer workstations and write code. Now, at the test benches or in the lab, I see the products controlled by my software for the first time. And I'm on test drives and see how the algorithms for our automatic transmissions work in practice."
"More than just writing code - I get to see how my software drives products."
Saniya Khan

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